Deshikottam Award

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The Deshikottam Award is the highest honor bestowed by Visva-Bharati University, a renowned Indian university founded by Rabindranath Tagore. The term “Deshikottam” translates to “Jewel of the Land” in Bengali.

It recognises individuals for their outstanding contributions in various fields, including Literature, Art and Culture, Science and Technology, Social Service and Education.

The award, which was established in 1921, is not bestowed annually and is presented only when the selection committee identifies individuals with truly exceptional contributions.

Kshitimohan Sen was the first Deshikottam (1952) of Vishwa Bharati.

Notable past recipients include Satyajit Ray, Mother Teresa, Amartya Sen, Amitabh Bachchan, Pandit Ravishankar, Lata Mangeshkar, music maestro Dr. Bal Murli Krishna, scientist CNR Rao and P Mashelkar, dance maestro Birju Maharaj, eminent scholar Rabindra K Dasgupta, space scientist Dr K Kasturirangan, filmmaker Adoor Gopalkrishnan, Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam, artist Satish Gujral, sculptor Shankha Choudhury and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

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